1928 - Alderson High School - 1968
Date: March 26, 2018
News Release
Contact:  Margaret Hambrick  or Nick LaCasse     304-646-2439               304-645-3398
814 West Washington Street Lewisburg, WV  24910 304-645-3398
NEWS RELEASE KATHERINE JOHNSON PROGRAM A SUCCESS In   spite   of   very   uncooperative   weather,   a   capacity   crowd   came   to   the   Lewis   Theatre   for   the   program about   Katherine   Coleman   Goble   Johnson   at   2:00   p.m.   on   Saturday,   March   24.     The   Greenbrier   Historical Society,   the   program   sponsor,   deeply   regrets   the   issues   with   the   weather   which   forced   the   cancellation of the 7:00 p.m. show and the inconveniences caused to those ticket holders. Kathy   Goble   Moore   spoke   about   the   lessons   her   mother   taught   by   both   word   and   example.      She   said, “One   of   her   favorite   questions   was   ‘What   did   you   learn   today?’   and   you   better   have   an   answer!”      Moore said   her   mother   believed   in   being   “better   not   bitter”   and   seldom   discussed   the   obstacles   she   had   to overcome.  Moore   also   spoke   about   her   own   choice   to   become   a   teacher   after   witnessing   the   poor   treatment received   by   children   of   color   in   the   school   system   where   she   lived.      She   went   on   to   become   a   mentor   to many other teachers and helped them overcome their prejudices to better teach all their students. Neely   Seams   and   Danny   Seams,   once   again,   delivered   a   stellar   performance   of      Pamela   Barry’s   short play,    “Azimuth    Angles,    Orbit    Calculations,    Trajectories,    Moon    Landing:“The    Right    Stuff”.    When Katherine’s   father   (played   by   Danny   Seams)   hugged   Katherine   (played   by   Neely   Seams)   and   gave   her words   of   wisdom,   the   audience   felt   the   warmth   of   the   moment   between   father   and   daughter   as   she tucked   her   head   under   his   chin.      The   coldness   and   hurt   of   the   “Jim   Crow”   south   was   also   felt   as Katherine was ordered to move to the back of the bus as she traveled to her first teaching job. Many   moments   like   these   added   up   to   a   gripping   performance   after   which   the   audience   erupted   into applause. A   short   Q   & A   session   ended   the   program   with   Danny   Seams   talking   about   this   being   his   first   “gig”   since he   was   5   years   old   and   played   a   wise   man   in   a   church   nativity   play;   Neely   Seams   responding   that   this performance   had   brought   home   to   her   how   much   her   ancestors   had   had   to   overcome;   Pamela   Barry describing   her   growing   excitement   as   she   discovered   more   and   more   original   material   and   quotes   as she   wrote   the   script;   and   Kathy   Moore   commenting   that   her   mother   still   loved   West   Virginia   and   White Sulphur Springs so much. Afterward,   Pamela   Barry   said,   “For   me,   this   moment   moved   me,   when   my   writing   and   Neely's   acting moved   Kathy   to   tears   as   she   felt   she   was   watching   her   mother   as   a   young   woman.   That   moment,   for me, was so powerful.” This   short   play   was   also   well   received   by   the   students   in   James   Monroe   High   School   and   Pocahontas County   High   School.      Nearly   1000   students   were   reached   with   Katherine   Johnson’s   message   that   all students   have   talents   and   can   succeed   even   though   they   may   face   obstacles.     The   Greenbrier   Historical Society is grateful to the Greenbrier Valley Community Foundation for partially funding those events. PHOTO   CAPTION:      (l   to   r)   Neely   Seams,   Kathy   Goble   Moore,   Danny   Seams,   and   Pamela   Barry   as   they answer questions from the audience. Founded   in   1963,   the   Greenbrier   Historical   Society   is   dedicated   to   community   enrichment   through education   and   preservation   of   the   history   and   culture   of   the   Greenbrier   Valley.   The   Greenbrier   Historical Society    is    a    regional    organization    that    serves    the    West    Virginia    counties    of    Greenbrier,    Monroe, Summers,   and   Pocahontas.   Email:   Info@greenbrierhistorical.org   http://www.greenbrierhistorical.org/   ; https://www.facebook.com/greenbrierhistorical/